africanepicure

About African Starches and Artisanal Grains

(Flickr: Rod Waddington) For millennia, African farmers have tended and saved their seeds from one harvest to the next, perfecting their food crops and continuing the cycles of civilization. The fields around villages and hamlets were colorful with long grasses sewn and reaped under the bright sun. Over time, variations developed that were unique to []

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Vegetables

Flickr: flequi We all know vegetables are healthy and good for you, but it’s not always easy to get enough of them into your diet everyday. It’s important to create a lot of variety with vegetables, and of course to always make sure they taste good. African Biodiversity We have such incredible diversity of vegetables []

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Moringa Leaves

Moringa leaves are a natural African superfood and an excellent green powder food supplement. Their leaves, which are exceptionally nutritious, maintain a very high level of their nutrients when dried. Rich in Vitamin A, B and C, it also contains protein and lots of antioxidants, as well as calcium and potassium. Here’s how moringa leaves []

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Kenkiliba Bushes (Kenkeliba)

Combretum micranthum: Latin; ŋɔlɔbɛ: Bambara; Kinkiliba: Senegal, The Gambia and many West African dialects. Courtesy of Wikipedia Kenkiliba is a very useful shrub, whose branches can be made into furniture and tools, and whose leaves have the most unusual properties. Its an unassuming plant, to be sure, but the lush thick leaves, pliant twigs and []

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Citronella Java All-Natural Insect Repellent

Courtesy of Wikipedia Citronella java essential oil makes a good insect repellent, but in our experience all other types of citronella are a bit weak. Lemongrass essential oil easily becomes an insect repellent spray. Be sure to shake it before using it, and reapply every couple of hours. All-Natural Citronella Insect Repellent Citronella java essential []

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Kenkiliba Detoxifying Tea

Courtesy of Wikipedia From certain West African standpoints, this brew is a cure-all. It is the definitive infusion to drink when you’ve been up too late and on the town, when you’re recovering from a string of heavy, festive meals, and when you’re feeling like your digestion and elimination systems need some aid. Kenkiliba leaves []

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Guidelines for Alcohol Infusions with African Fruits and Botanicals

Ah, a delicious African cocktail (Flickr: StuartWebster) Here are some basic guidelines that we suggest when starting to experiment with white alcohol infusions. White alcohol can be vodka, white rum and maybe even tequila, if you’re feeling very bold. Ideally, it is very light in flavor or the flavor of the alcohol complements your chosen []

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Desserts and Sweets

A bowl of Swahili mandazi (Courtesy of Wikipedia) Dessert is the special time at the end of the meal when everyone sits around and takes stock of all the enjoyment and pleasure that has been had at the table. Sweet things are enjoyed to remind us of the natural sweetness and goodness of life. Some []

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Chai Iced Tea

Chai made with cinnamon is warming and grounding. (Courtesy of Wikipedia) This tea is a grounding and comforting mix of ayurvedic spices used for warming and good digestion. It is our version of the beloved East African masala chai, without caffeine, and refreshingly served cold. Some stomachs are sensitive to ginger, and when strong flavors []

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Spices

Unripe peppercorns in a spice garden (Flickr: meaduva) The sheer enormity of the number of botanicals, herbs and spices used to flavor food in Africa makes it impossible to accurately to this section any justice, but we will try. In addition to indigenous spices that grow naturally on the continent, Africa has long been a []

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Cocktails and Spirit Infusions

Cocktails are best enjoyed with a view (Flicrk: 李甘特 Li Gan Te) Africa boasts an incredible array of fruits, herbs and spices that are perfectly suited to cocktail making. While a high-income approach to cocktail making typically requires a wide variety of carefully branded and marketed liquors and liquors—most of which have to be imported []

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Brewing

Courtesy of Wikipedia The African tradition of brewing has been passed down and enjoyed by generation after generation. There is an art to preserving abundant ingredients in the natural environment by fermenting them into drinkable alcohol. It takes time and patience to learn. Not everyone can do it. Of course, commercial brewing has long replaced []

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Honey

Flicrk: eleZeta / Honey bees play an essential role in plant pollination and our food system African Honey African honey is the stuff of legend: a healing antibiotic and anti-inflammatory, a prized forest nectar and a drink of the Gods. Call us biased, but we think it’s the best in the world. When honey is []

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Fish and Seafood

Fresh-caught parrot fish (Flickr: Lee Nachtigal) The African continent is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian Ocean, as well as the Red Sea and the Mediterreanean Sea. That is an impressive variety of different marine ecosystems and near shore environments, and the near miraculous biodiversity of the waters finds its way to our []

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Meat and Poultry

Suya. Delicious. (Flickr: usabin) Cooking with meat, for us, is always a special occasion. We are grateful that an animal has sacrificed its life for us and we honor that by cooking it as well as we can and enjoying it as much as possible. Serving meat is an opportunity to gather and celebrate and []

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